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MARAD to fund ship hydrogen power cell research

The US Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MARAD) has announced that it is providing $500,000 to support a feasibility study for the design, construction, and operation of a high-speed passenger ferry powered by hydrogen fuel cell technology and a hydrogen refuelling station.

{mprestriction ids="1,2"}The fuel cell would provide power for the ferry’s propulsion and auxiliary electrical systems, while the hydrogen refuelling station – which would be the largest in the world – would service the ferry, electric cars, buses and fleet vehicles, and other maritime vessels powered by fuel cells.

“This study is just one more way in which MARAD is working to find new and efficient technologies for use in the maritime industry that offer clean-fuel options to cut emissions,” said Maritime Administrator Paul ‘Chip’ Jaenichen.

“The US maritime industry can play an important role in reducing the world’s carbon dioxide emissions and creating a more sustainable future for us all.”

MARAD has partnered on this project with Sandia National Laboratories, part of the US Department of Energy (DOE), which will lead the research effort. The study will examine the technical, regulatory, and economic aspects of a high-speed hydrogen fuel cell vessel as a clean energy alternative.

This study is part of ongoing work by MARAD’s Maritime Environmental and Technical Assistance Program (META) and other industry stakeholders to conduct research, testing, validation and documentation of fuel cells for marine applications.

The work complements an ongoing joint project to demonstrate fuel cells to provide auxiliary power for other port and shipboard applications, such as powering refrigerated containers and replacing diesel generators.

MARAD is also funding an effort to demonstrate a fuel cell for ship auxiliary power for its school ship Kennedy, which is used by Massachusetts Maritime Academy as a training vessel.{/mprestriction}

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